Union College-Schenectady Top Questions

What is your overall opinion of this school?


Being a small school Union becomes very family oriented. You can eaisly find yourself feeling "at home" whether it be talking with a professor in their office, meeting friends at the small friendly cafeteria, doing work at the "house-like" minervas, or even listening to a lecture with a small group of students (since Union has small classes). The thing that attracts me the most at Union is by far that even when I feel homesick, theres outlets everywhere on campus to make me fell right back at home.


Union is a small liberal arts college with a strong emphasis on academics. The professors are accessible and you will definitely have a strong bond with many of your teachers. The Minerva system contributes to the overall community of the school with cultural, social, and academic events. Greek life is a strong presence at the school, but it is not an overwhelming force and there are many alternatives for those who do ont want to get involved. The campus is beautiful and because of the trimester system, we get to enjoy it when it looks best. The trimester system allows students to focus on their three or four classes a term while still being apart of athletic teams or extracurricular activities.


The best thing about Union is that it is a nice small liberal arts school that always has something to offer for anyone looking for something to do. No matter what interests you, there is always something going on in a Minerva or on campus in general that will interest you.


Union is a great liberal arts school. The small size of student body is just right to enhance close relationships between students and professors. People here are very friendly and open to new ideas. Therefore, it is not hard to mingle in no matter what you are interested in


I like the academics at Union. There is a mix of people with different interests and we have access to numerous fields of study because Union is a liberal arts school. It's a small school with a beautiful campus during the spring and fall terms. I wish the winters were not so cold and brutal, though. There's not really a college town around us, and most of us spend our time on campus. As I said before, this school is big on Greek Life. On the weekends, many students enjoy going to the frat parties with our friends, but there are SO many extracurricular activities people take advantage of.


Union is the perfect sized school. It's big enough where you don't feel like you're at high school anymore, but it's small enough so that you can easily meet other students and your professors can get to know you better. Union has a small student to professor ratio which is great because you know that you have a greater chance to stand out and you have a greater opportunity to participate in class. Union also has an amazing community! Everyone supports everyone else and everyone lends a helping hand if needed. The whole campus really looks out for each other. No matter who you are or where you come from, there is always a place for you at Union. Everyone makes you feel so comfortable and at home, its an amazing feeling. While Union may not be in the most welcoming of areas, there are great places to go in Schenectady. There are a bunch of great restaurants, a movie theater, a theater, and stores close by. It can be a really fun town when you give it a chance! Union is a college where you can excel with your academics and have a great social life all at the same time. You will not find more dedicated professors anywhere else. If you want to go to a college that will lead you to nothing but success, then Union is the college to go to. It offers nothing but excellence!


The best thing about Union is the Minerva Program. This program enhances academics, leadership, and socialization. Not only are there a number of study rooms and classrooms provided in each Minerva for professors to hold their classes, but a number of departments hold events for the students to get to know the professors on a personal basis. The program encourages leadership as you are able to run for a position on your Minerva board, help plan events, and decide how to spend the budget. The Minerva program enhances socialization because events are held at the houses where students can become engaged and expand their social circle.


the best thing about union is the atmosphere on campus. there is a really intimate feel about it and it is the perfect size. everywhere i go, i see someone i know, yet i am still meeting new people to this day. plus, its BEAUTIFUL here! schenectady is a bit of a turn off, but it is fun to venture out to proctors or to try off-campus food. that being said, the food on campus is TERRIBLE.


I cannot say the "best thing about Union" because there are too many great things to categorize one as being the best. The size is great for making close friends and close relationships with professors. When I tell people that I go to Union their first response is, "Ooo its cold up in upstate right?" and my response is always a smiling nod because the proceeding comments are all about the great things they've heard about the college and I tell them that they are right. The pride that Union students have about their academics flows easily to the sports arena. Games are always packed with screaming fans and the cheers are always enthusiastic. Friends support their peers and friends during the competitions!


Union- where to begin! I picked Union because it had everything that I wanted in a college- small, close-knit, and liberal arts. When I came to the campus for the first time, I honestly knew that Union was the place for me. With so much to offer, Union was the only college that offered a high quality education that also offered the financial aid to help afford it. When you tell someone you go to Union, they are generally impressed from knowing Union to be such a prestigious school. The amount of things to do on campus is endless and sometimes you may find yourself going crazy that you cannot attend everything at once! The faculty and staff are awesome at organizing events along side the students and are always willing to help with anything and everything. And the history! Since it was established in 1795, there are buildings on campus (like the incredible Nott) that are absolutely gorgeous and full of stories. Almost every part of the campus was donated by someone or constructed by a historical figure. Overall, Union has everything- the campus, the academics and the social scene!


I choose Union over institutions like Cornell, Colgate, Bucknell, the University of Rochester, and seven other colleges for the diversity and cohesiveness in everything the college had to offer, both inside and out of the classroom. And while Union may be a smaller college, what Union lacks in quantity the college makes up for in quality. The small classes consist of students and professors with diverse backgrounds, opinions, and experiences, which make for stimulating discussions and attention-grabbing lectures. Finally, the smaller enrollment caught my attention because I knew that I would be treated as more than just an ID number. I had not been at Union’s Accepted Students day for but a few hours when professors were already introducing themselves to me and offering advice. While choosing a college may seem like an agonizing decision process, Union’s close-knit community, small class size, and zealous faculty made my decision easy.


Union College is a place of opportunity. The campus is beautiful and the facilities are modern. You have unbelievable access to your professors, and administrators as well as friendly help from the surrounding community. I fell in love with Union the moment I stepped onto campus. Not only are the courses invigorating and motivational, but the opportunity to get involved is at the core of Union College. You can be involved in one club, or several. Either way, there are ways for your voice to be heard and for your ideas to become reality. Since Union is such a small school, the community is tight and in return you receive support. In addition, Union is focused on the bigger picture and real world occurrences. We foster programs that reach out to our extended community both globally and internationally. If you are looking for a school that will be both academically challenging and allow you to pursue your own passions, then Union College is the place.


The biggest things that Union has going for it are its small size and its large endowment. These two things together make for an amazing experience. The small size assures that no student is just a number or a face in class. Individualized attention is not something that is hard to come by. The college definitely invests more in individual students than many other colleges. This is all added to by the large endowment. Schools with comparable funds typically have much larger student bodies than Union. Here, that endowment takes the form of beautiful facilities, extremely generous financial aid, and countless amounts of funded research and internship opportunities. The college really is just right.


The size of Union is perfect for me. The professors know my name. Whenever I'm walking anywhere on campus, I'm bound to see at least one person I know. Basically everything is centrally located and easy to get to, never a super long walk.


I have loved Union since I came here. Transitioning to college is tough no matter where you go but Union helped make me feel right at home. The professors are incredible and helpful. The community is very strong: we have a lot of pride. The campus is gorgeous in any season. I have really loved my initial experience here.


The best thing about Union is its small size and the trimester schedule. Union's small size is beneficial to students because the professors are easily accessible to their students and the classes are personal. The professors actually get to know your name and who you are because there are only about 20 kids per class. If you ever need help you actually see the professor and not a teaching assistant like at most big universities. The trimester schedule is great! With this schedule you only have to concentrate on 3 classes per term and it makes it easier to get winter internships with the long six week break from Thanksgiving to just after New Years. Both the small size and trimester schedule make it easy for you to stand out and get more involved.


I love the smaller size of the school. I never feel overwhelmed and alone because nearly every face is a familiar one. It is always easy to find a friend of even find a new one and with the Minerva program in place we always have a cool place to go and hang out. Students at Union are very spirited, they love the school and let you know it, but how they cannot love a place like Union.


Union, is a very small school where you are judged by everything you do since everyone WILL find out about every detail of your personal life. Where I'm from, no one has ever heard of Union or went here, with my own high school guidance counselor suggesting I go to a "good school instead." If I could change one thing aboout Union I would take it the hell out of Schenectady because we have no cute college town, just slums where you WILL be shot by bb guns or robbed. Also there are no eating options what so ever and if you even think about wanting to eat after midnight then you better know you will be eating the same greasy takeout food every night from Rupsis. Most people spend their free time "getting fucked up"" due to lack of anything else to do. Oh and if you attend Union you better like eating dinner at 4 pm because that's when its served! Also the number one hated thing at Union College, suprisingly more hated (if that's possible) by the alumni than by the students is the administration who have put ALL of their efforts into making Union less of a party school with failed policies such as the point system and attempting to destroy greek life.


Beautiful campus, everyone knows everyone else, frat parties, great extracurrculars when people take advantage of them, nice facilities, good friends, Schenectady has bad parts and good parts... there are nice restaurants, everyone's always in Reamer Campus Center ("Reamer Rats"), list of things to do before you graduate (paint the idol, naked nott run, sex on the U, smoke in the gardens, go through the tunnels by the gardens)


The best thing about Union is the Nott memorial, it is the center of campus and is the most attractive thing about the school. Union doesn't really have much popularity besides bragging about how we graduated two presidents who most people wouldn't know unless they went here, and the nott memorial. The school is great, friendly atmosphere and liberal. Not much school pride in terms of sports, you won't see students pack the stadiums for sporting events. Also student forum is very controversial, elections are rigged. The frats are amazing, great parties that dominate the social scene. Overall, its very easy to get noticed and stand out, and get involved.


The best thing about Union is the small size and abundance of activities. Some people feel the school is too small and that everyone knows each other. It's true that you know the majority of students at least by face, but this makes for a comfortable, homey environment. If your looking to be independent and anonymous this place isn't for you! Class sizes are small and the professors very knowledgable. I am constantly impressed at how personally interested the teachers are not only in their own field, but each students success. If you show you are putting in effort most professors will go out of their way, willingly, to help you. There are hundreds of school sponsored activities every month, although many of them are academic and most do not involve drinking. The Minerva System is unique to Union and is a wonderful academic and social tool. It is important to note that the Minervas do not in any way replace Greek Life or weekend parties; instead they offer more wholesome activites and academicly related events such as speakers and discussions.


I love the small class sizes and if you do your work, the professor are very understanding and responsive. The size does make for some cliqueness amoung student and much of the social life is centered around greek life. Their is recent controversy over the adminstration attempting to diminish greek life and partying but alumni and students are fighting back. The new director of greek life is doing a good job balancing adminstration and greek wants.


I think that the best thing about Union is its size. While it is on the small side, there are many advantages. I find it easier to focus in my smaller classes and also going to see my professors for one on one help isnt intimidating and they are extremely helpful and understanding. When I tell people that I attend Union the usual response is "Wow, good for you!" and my parents are extremely proud of me. Most of my time on campus is usually in the Campus Center or the softball field. There is always something to do at school whether it is a movie, a show, or a guest speaker. School pride is great! It never fails that when I leave my room I will see at least 5 people on campus wearing Union apparel. Sports games are always full of fans and faculty. The one negative thing about Union is that the campus is open to the city of Schenectady. While the signs say it is a closed campus, people from the city tend to walk through campus day and night and there are many cases of robbery throughout the year.


Union is a lot of fun. I love the diversity of social events on campus. Schenectady is also fun, but only if you know where to go and look for it. The bars are sketchy, but cheap. The administration is a bunch of buffoons for the most part, especially the Dean of Students. He doesn't seem to know or care any students except those in trouble. There is little diversity on campus, as Union is incredibly expensive and does not do well at recruiting students from low income families or areas. School pride is very low.


Union offers small classes in a small school environment. With just 2100 students, getting to know professors is easy. The course selection is extremely diverse, which is one of the reasons I chose Union. The courses are the best thing about Union in my opinion. Though many people might not be familiar with the name of Union, the academics are certainly well respected, which is what I found in applying to law school. One thing I would change would be the overwhelming emphasis of Greek life. Fraternities and sororities are a large part of many students Union experience, and it sometimes seemed that there was a lot of social choices outside of frats. That being said, there are lots of activities available to students, such as free movies and comedians every week. Schenectady is not a college town, but in my four years there, it has gotten better. There are some shops and restaurants downtown, along with a movie theater and some bars within walking distance of campus. It is, however, not the safest city.


Personally, I enjoy the small classes. It really enhances my learning and keeps me going to class because my professors know who I am. The school is small, so it all depends on your taste. Not much of a college town because it is sort of in the ghetto, but there are surrounding areas that are nice, like Albany. Plus, it is a highly rated school, so that's always a positive.


The best thing about union is the general campus scene- it's a beautiful campus. It's small, but that's not a bad thing. You can go from any one place to another within about 8 minutes. There's a lot of school pride, but especially in the hockey team. Everyone goes to the games, and they're free for students. People rarely go into the city of Schenectady because it gets a bad rap, but it's not so bad.


The best things about Union are the campus, the trimester, and the people. The buildings on campus have beautiful architecture, and the trees and gardens make Union seem much more welcoming than most colleges. Many people who aren't on a trimester schedule at their school do not realize how great it is. Yeah, so we don't have the same breaks as most colleges and we get out in June, but you can't beat only having to deal with 3 classes for ten weeks. It makes the school year seem a lot more organized and it is easy to get internships in the winter (when most kids are still in school and there is less competition), and the summer. There are people who fit almost every stereotype here at Union. Although the lack of diversity here is sometimes discussed, I think that no matter what category you identify yourself with there is at least one group of people you will connect with. Everyone is very nice and mature here and it is easy to get along. The one thing I would change about Union would be the location. I would just rather be in a somewhat nicer area. But, I guess it makes renting an off campus house cheaper when you are older.


Most people are iffy about the trimester schedule at Union. I like the trimester schedule academically, it makes the classes go by faster and you only have to take 3 classes at a time. I also don't mind staying longer into the summer because spring term is so much fun here no one even wants to go home. The winter break is a little bit too long, it gets boring being home form a month and a half in the middle of winter when none of your friends are home. The administration is very responsive, personal and usually friendly. I find that the only people who actually know what Union is are smart people like my doctor, my dentist, or my IV league parent's friends. At first when I came to Union I was thinking about transferring because Fall and Winter term were hard to get use to, however Spring term is Union's hidden secret; Spring term is ridiculously fun, everyone is always outside just hanging out, at sports games or partying. Try to save your easy classes for spring term. Schenectady is a pretty sketchy town, you cannot really walk around it by yourself, but I feel fairly safe on campus. Most people here are from NJ, NYC or Massachusetts... it doesn't really bother me but it seems like everyone's town is the same; either rich, white suburbs right outside or a big city, or directly in NYC.


Union is a good size, in terms of student body. The campus is absolutely beautiful, especially in the fall and spring when the trees and flowers are in bloom or changing color. In general, many people have heard of Union and sign its praises. There are always a lot of activities going on around campus and it is easier than many other colleges to find something suitable for your own personality. One of Union's greatest atributes (apart from academic reputation) is its school pride, especially at hockey games - the highlight of winter term.


Schenectady is a far cry from a college town, and Union can feel very small at times though overall students get a lot of attention from administration and faculty is very accessable.


Union has a beautiful campus. The size is just right, its not so small everyone knows everyones business but its small enough that you will know someone wherever you go on campus.Union has a division 1 Hockey team which has a ton of support from the student body and faculty alike.


Union is a small school with a variety of different people and different opportunities. Being an RA on campus, I have had a chance to interact with students and faculty and I believe that the school has much to offer if you go looking


Union is a small liberal arts college. It is on the trimester system, which means we have three ten week semesters. We get a really long winter break (Thanksgiving to New Years), however we only get a week for spring break and we stay in school until the second week of June, about a month after most colleges get out. People are very impressed when they here that I attend Union. The class sizes are very small and the teachers are alays availble for office hours and are really helpful. Schenectady is not know for being a great "college town," however the downtown area is really coming back and it has cool little shops and coffee places you can go to.


I have thoroughly enjoyed my time and experience at Union, however I do feel that the administrative is making changes to Union that I do not necessarily agree with. They are cracking down on the social life which really bothers me. They have made frat parties much stricter and same to be trying to get rid of the Greek system as being notorious for parties, which is upsetting considering we are the mother of all fraternities. Union is a small school in a shitty town, so there's not a lot to do except party and study. We definitely have the mentality of work hard and player even harder.


I like the size of the school because I got to know most of the people around, but I often wish that I went to a bigger school because it would make it more diverse and I would be able to meet new people all the time.


Union is a wonderful place; it will help you grow as much as you let it. Some students here just learn a lot about their field because they resist growth. Simply by removing the resistance, I will soon present at my second and third research conferences and will be published as an undergraduate. I have learned a lot about research and leadership without really having to try. Some students miss out because they don't realize the opportunities that exist on this campus, but if you keep your eyes open, there is no limit to how much you can learn and grow.


Union is the absolutely perfect size, it has just enough students and an absolutely beautiful campus. Its great that the campus is so nice because very little time is ever spent off campus.


The best thing about Union is that campus and social events. The campus is beautiful and Union makes it very easy for students to get involved in their school. One thing I would change is the tuition, definitely! The size of the school is just right for me! When I tell people that I attend Union College they usually react positively, saying its a great school, but fellow college students usually say wow you're not as snotty as most of the other students. I spend most of my time on campus in the campus center, outside, the gym, and my room (anywhere with my friends). Definitely not a college town, there is not much to do around the campus if you don't have a car. Union's administration is very distant from its students, not a good relationship. They are not in tune with the student's real needs. The recent controversy was a rape earlier this year and the college's lies about term abroads. There is definitely a lot of school pride. The school memories I will always have are the times with my friends that we each completed school traditions. The most complaints about Union is the tuition, where is all the money going?, the school lies about certain requirements just to entice potential students, and that the surrounding city is not ideal for college students.


its really great how you can walk around this campus and say hi to the majority of the students. It's small, but I never feel like its too small. Its friendly, almost overly friendly, everybody always seems to be happy. The academics here are great. We have core requirements, a cluster requirement, but other than that you can do whatever you want. we only take three classes at a time, so I am not in the classroom a lot during the week, (my schedule now is one 11:45 on mwf and 9-10:45 and 1:55 to 3:40 every tthu.) but I do spend a lot of time on the work. don't be scared about schenectady, it doesnt bite, in fact it has a lot more to offer than you think. I like going to school in a city. We rarely leave campus to party, except for a few bars which are basically on campus. night life/... you choose from, off campus houses, dorm parties, bars and frats. we go out pretty much every wed, friday, saturday. there is a lot of school pride. A LOT of people play sports here. Right now I am living with three otehr people. I share a double, then we have a common room, and then another double attached. Next year, I am living in a minerva house they are these new harry-potter-ish houses. Theyre really really reallly nice. I am not in a sorority although a lot of girls here are.


If there's one thing that any Union student would change, it would have to be Schenectady. I know people who have made it through college without ever venturing off campus. I personally don't think its too bad but I know a lot of people who do. On the brightside, Albany is just around the corner and there's plenty to do there. Also, Union does a really good job keeping campus interesting with comedians and movies and all other sorts of things on weekends.


One thing about Union is that it's a small school. That can be a really good thing: small class sizes, sense of community, recognizing faces on campus, etc. but it can also feel really small at points. If you don't make an effort to branch out and do new things, particularly on weekends, it can get pretty repetitive. However there are lots of other things to do on an off campus than frats. There are concerts in Albany, skiing in VT, ect. Schenectady gets a bad rep, which it probably deserves, but there are some cool things within walking distance of the campus like rock climbing, movies, restaurants and stuff.


The best thing about Union is all the free stuff you get, not even kidding-- you can find free food everywhere and go without eating in the dining hall very easily. You just have to plan it out and know which events are serving food and what-not. There's nothing like FREE Indian, Chinese, BBQ, or Pizza... or ice cream... The size of Union is great because I can walk through campus and see a bunch of people I know, and yet I feel like I am meeting new people all the time as well. It's a good balance. The one thing I would change about Union is probably... the student body. I would like to see more diversity in every aspect, especially in the backgrounds of students. I wish Union were a bit more politically and socially active, and I wish the students were a little more creative and...driven. Yes, that's it. Drive. We need more of that. Don't get me wrong, there are some incredibly driven and talented people here, but on average that's not so. It would make the atmosphere more challenging and exciting in my opinion if there were more people who were passionate about something other than Keystone Light.


The college is a good size in general. The classes aren't too big and, for the most part, the professors seem eager to teach. Most instructors are happy to meet with students outside of class and make an effort to give each student a good education. The campus is beautiful, but venture even a block off campus and the area is pretty sketchy. Don't expect many nights on the town, because Schenectady is economically depressed and doesn't offer what most students are looking for. The city has made positive changes, however, and things do seem to be improving by little steps. The school's administration acts like a 50-year-old edition of the typical student (read: ...not good) and having to deal with them can be frustrating at time. If you have an issue, you should find a nice person and try to deal with them as much as possible.


The Minervas are really hurting the school. they attempt to create a sense of community but ultimately fail. The big problem is the minervas are made of groups of students that have nothing in common. while this might help at helping people make friends, it ultimately fails at being the center of the social scene. minervas also get 10 thousand dollars a term to spend on whatever they want. the vast majority of this money goes to free food, video games, and big tvs. most kids who go out end up going to the fraternities, which get no money from the administration and must shoulder the burden of having to take responsibility for all the drunken kids on campus.


Union is really old, and retains a lot of its traditional ways. The majority of the population is from the northeast - New England and New York - so the student body is fairly democratic, but also very conservative. While it's not explicitly homophobic, it can be less than inviting to the gay community. Also, Union is extremely self-contained. Located in Schenectady, New York, it's not exactly the center of excitement. Schenectady used to be a thriving city, but the GE collapse lead to a major decline. Union students almost never leave campus. Part of the problem is that there is not much happening in the immediate area around the college and a few blocks away can get you into pretty rough neighborhoods. However, Schenectady is working really hard to gentrify and increase its appeal to Union students.


Union is a great school! When I tell someone I go here, they are immediately impressed. The classes are small so you get one on one attention from your teachers. I love the trimester schedule as you only take three classes at a time!


I personally think Union is great. The community is small, which is nice. It is nice to see people I know when I walk around campus. When I tell people that I go to Union, I normally mention that my parents went here too. I also usually have to tell people that it is near Albany, as nobody has ever heard of Schenectady. I love that the places that I want to go in Schenectady are within walking distance. When on campus, I usually hang out with friends in the dorm. One thing that most Union students have a lot of school pride for is our men's hockey team. It is the only sport we are Division 1 in, so our hockey games are always a big deal. Union is the first college with a planned out campus design, or something like that. Also, we have the only sixteen sided building in the Northern Hemisphere, the Nott memorial. That is a fun fact that I like to tell people.


Schenectady, Union's hometown, is improving but still lacking in terms of safety particularly at night. Muggings and holdups of students on and off campus occur at least several times per year. The college has improved its safety measures but especially women should never walk around the campus, let alone Schenectady, alone at night. Socially, the strong Greek presence on campus makes the student body very cliquish. While students are not apathetic to the degree that many professors maintain (and sometimes even rail on about in classes), there is nevertheless a pervasive unintellectual atmosphere that hangs over the entire campus. The often stellar academics do much to combat this problem but it nevertheless still exists and, from what longtime professors have intimated, has existed perennially at Union. The new President of the college, Ainlay, is a very reasonable presence on campus and clearly has the interests of the students in mind. I think that he will do much to improve Union's lingering problems that I have described over the next few years.


I love Union. I think it is the perfect size school if you want to attend a small school. IT is small but i still have a chance to meet new people everyday and it is nice to know a good portion of the campus because then you have more people to share memories with and it gives you a chance to become familiar with students from all classes not just yours. Union is in Schenectady NY and eventhough right now it is not much of a college town, Schenectady is beginning to bloom. Much of the down town area is being redone and the area near the Proctors theater is a really nice place to get something to eat and go see a movie. I would also say that there is a good amount of school pride at this school, hockey games are the biggest thing to go watch but there are always people at the games and the sports teams at Union are very good.